We had worked hard for the last six months since July 2012. It was a tough time and we had sailed through well. We were now in the last few weeks of December. It was an ideal time to take some time off and let the team relax a little. We also wanted to gear up to the New Year with renewed vigor and interest.
Month – 23 December 2012 (Sunday)
Event – Trip to Lonavala
Picture 1 (L – R): Chinmay Navre, Arun Raja, Ashish Gosavi, Sachin Sadare and Pravin Varankar
Picture 2 (L – R): Sushant Jamdar, Arun Raja, Pravin Varankar, Chinmay Navre, Muzaffar Khan, Sachin Sadare and Gajanan Bhat
We wanted to plan a one day trip and there is no better place to visit than Lonavala. All the travel arrangements were done. We booked a private vehicle and planned the itenary. (Refer to the map for places to visit while in Lonavala.)
We left in the morning at 7 am from Borivali National Park and it took us about 11 am till we reached Karla Caves. These caves are approximately 10 kms from Lonavala (towards Pune). The caves are located on a hill and one has to climb nearly 500 steps to reach there. Karla Caves are ancient Buddhist type of carvings and sculptures similar to what one can see at the Ajanta and Ellora caves, just not as grand. It also has a temple of Goddess Ekvira, known as the mother of fishermen. It is said that this temple was originally built by the Pandavas during their exile. The caves are a wonderful place to visit for any tourist interested in ancient history. Or for the devotees of Goddess Ekvira. Grand festivities are organized here during the Navratri festival.
After Karla Caves, we returned back to Lonavala. Muzaffar who had missed the early morning alarm joined us directly at Lonavala. We visited the Ryewood Park where we all played cricket, grazed for a while and relaxed. Most of the team had not played cricket for a while and it showed. This tired us and we all were now looking forward to a nice lunch. We found a nice restaurant. We ordered some spicy dishes and some chilled beer to cool us off. A lunch well deserved.
We followed it with a trip to the Bushy Dam. The water was not overflowing as it does just after the monsoons. The best time to visit Bushy Dam is September or October. The shortage of water allowed us to cross the dam and sit on the bank of the lake. It was nice to let the feet feel the chill of the waters. Once we had enjoyed the beauty of the Bushy Dam, we went to the Tiger’s Leap. It is a point where you can see the valley and the hills. It is scary but a sight to behold. A beautiful photo taking spot for the picture lovers. We took a lot of snaps here.
We had planned to visit the monkey garden (Rajmachi point), the sunset point and the Duke’s nose on our way back but it was already a little late. We encountered a lot of traffic on our way back to Lonavala. We were asked to take a contour to avoid the construction work being carried out. It was almost 6 by the time we reached Lonavala. We had a quick tea, snacks, some shopping for chikkis, fudge, jellies and we were ready to start our return journey. We decided to skip the rest of the itenary. We already had a good time since morning. It was a great day spent with the team – Gajanan Bhat, Pravin Varankar, Sushant Jamdar, Ashish Gosavi, Arun Raja, Chinmay Navre, Muzaffar Khan and myself. It was a day well spent. Three cheers to the entire team that made the day special.
If you like the blog, please share. Thanks!